Replace the build plate clamps of the Ultimaker 3

The build plate clamps hold the glass plate in place on the heated bed. There are two fixed in place at the back of the heated bed and two at the front that can both be opened. When the glass plate is installed, it is pushed into the clamps at the back.

After removing and reinstalling the glass plate many times, the back build plate clamps may lose their grip on the glass plate. If that happens, the glass plate can move during printing, leading to print issues such as shifted layers.

If excessive force is applied to the clamps, they could break off. This can happen if the print is removed from the glass without taking the plate out of the printer first.

If the clamps are damaged, it is recommended to replace them to retain optimal print quality. The following steps describe how to correctly replace the back build plate clamps.

Parts required:

  • 1 or 2x 1256 Build plate clamp (back)

Tools required:

  • Pliers or socket wrench
  • Ruler 


  • 15 minutes


1. Remove the glass plate

  • Open the front two build plate clamps.
  • Gently slide the glass plate out of the printer. 

2. Move the Z stage up

  • Place the print head in the front-right corner.
  • Manually move the build plate halfway up. 

3. Remove the knurled nuts

  • Loosen and remove the three knurled nuts from the base plate.

Tip: Make sure to also remove the washers from the base plate; due to the copper grease, they may remain stuck to the plate. Put them around the knurled nuts with the greased side facing up.

Ultimaker3_Remove-glass-plate.jpeg Ultimaker3_Lift-up-Z-stage.jpeg


4. Remove the springs

  • Lift up the heated bed.
  • Remove the springs from all three bolts.
  • Remove the build plate clamps from the front two bolts.

Ultimaker3_Remove-build-plate-spring.jpeg Ultimaker3_Remove-build-plate-clamp-front.jpeg


Tip: Move the Z stage to the bottom. This will create more room and makes performing the following steps easier.

5. Remove the back build plate clamps

  • Flip the heated bed over so the black side is facing towards you.
  • Use pliers or a socket wrench to remove the two lock nuts from each of the build plate clamps at the back of the bed.
  • Remove the clamps from the integrated bolts.

Tip: The bolts are integrated in to the heated bed and the build plate clamp only just fits over them. Because of this, it can be difficult to remove. Press the build plate clamp against the top side of the heated bed. From the bottom side, first lift up the side of the clamp on the outside of the bed to be able to move it over the bolt. Now rotate the clamp approximately 45º and remove it from the other bolt.

Ultimaker3_Remove-lock-nuts-build-plate-clamp-back.jpeg Ultimaker3_tip_Remove-back-build-plate-clamp.jpeg


1. Attach the new build plate clamps

  • First place the hole of the new build plate clamp around the bolt on the inside of the bed.
  • Rotate the build plate clamp and slightly lift it up to place the other hole around the outermost bolt.
  • Repeat this for the other side.
  • Using pliers or a socket wrench, secure the clamps to the bed with two lock nuts each. 

Ultimaker3_Place-new-build-plate-clamp-back.jpeg Ultimaker3_Attach-new-build-plate-clamp-back.jpeg

2. Secure the back of the bed

  • Flip the heated bed around again and lift up the build plate approximately halfway.
  • Align the bolt in the back with the hole in the base plate and place a spring around the bolt.
  • Place a knurled nut through the opening in the back of the base plate and turn it counterclockwise to secure the heated bed. 

3. Prepare the front two bolts

  • Put the front-left build plate clamp around the front-left bolt, then a spring.
  • Put the front-right build plate clamp around the front-right bolt, then a spring.

Ultimaker3_Secure-back-heated-bed.jpeg Ultimaker3_Place-build-plate-clamp-front.jpegUltimaker3_Place-build-plate-spring.jpeg

4. Secure the front of the bed

  • Align the front two bolts with the holes in the base plate.
  • Place a knurled nut through the openings in the base plate.
  • Gently push the bed down and turn the knurled nuts counterclockwise to secure the heated bed.

5. Ensure the correct distance

  • Use a ruler to measure the distance between the bottom of the heated bed and the top of the base plate.
  • This distance should be approximately 14 mm. Adjust the knurled nuts accordingly.

Tip: A (printed) 14 mm spacer can also be used to set the correct distance.

Caution: This distance is important for active leveling to work properly. If the bed is set too high, the printer cannot measure the position of the bed, leading to active leveling errors.

6. Level the build plate

  • Slide the glass plate on the heated bed.
  • Close the front two build plate clamps to secure it in place.
  • Turn the printer on and go to “System > Build plate > Manual leveling.” Follow the leveling procedure to ensure that the build plate is correctly leveled.

Ultimaker3_Set-correct-distance.jpeg Ultimaker3_Level-bed.jpeg

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